Will Swanson Saves 'Tarzan of the Apes'
This is a Will and I would save Tarzan of the Apes By Edgar Rice Burroughs.
Well, if we're at a point where society is just burning books because books are bad, you know, the time for argument is over and you just kind of want to protect some stories. And aside from being a good story on its own Tarzan--as Burroughs demonstrated with like 20 odd sequels--it's also really good source material for other stories. So you can keep the narrative traditions that have kind of shape to human culture for so long kind of going.
I think he kind of speaks to this sense that we all kind of have that we don't necessarily belong or that, you know, there's some aspect of us that's missing because he's you know he's marooned and he's adopted by gorillas and they call him 'Tarzan' which is, you know, supposed to be 'white skin' in their language. So from the beginning he's just set apart by the fact that he's not truly one of the people he lives with. And kind of throughout the whole novel he struggles with this.
You've got this guy who... he identifies with the gorillas who raised him. He can read English but he's never heard it so he can't speak it. So he's... he's not you know in a sense truly an Englishman.
He eventually learns to speak French but he can't read it and his parents are English so he's not properly a Frenchman either.
And, you know, the of the first humans He met, you know, he despised them because they they killed the gorilla who nurtured him as a child. And so the bonds that tie us together are kind of frail.
It is an extremely compelling and accessible story that, without making an argument for the existence of books, will make the case for the existence of books in the sheer quality of its storytelling.